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Equipment Etc

Profoto B1 - Automatic Studio Flash For Canon and Nikon

Studio flash used to seem a bit hard. Well, actually, once you understand apertures, flash sync, ISO and can get your head around it, studio flash is actually pretty easy. But it's even easier now with the Profoto B1 because it calculates the flash for you, plus it's a battery operated unit which means you can take it on location. No mains power required.

The unit is not small like a speedlight flash, so you'll need a light stand to hold it and you might as well take advantage of some of the great light shapers too, like a brolly, a softbox or a beauty dish (which was used for the photo above). The quality of light you can produce with the right attachment is second to none.

The rechargeable batteries attach to the side of the unit and multiple batteries mean you can shoot for as long as you need to. I took around 150 shots and the battery showed 2/3 power left. Profoto says a battery will give you 220 full power flashes, but you may find you're rarely using full power and so the number of flashes in practice could be much higher.

Using the flash unit is easy. Attach the special Profoto remote control unit to your camera's hot shoe (I was using a Canon EOS 60D) and turn it on. Make sure you have the channels set correctly (chances are the default settings will be right) and press the buttons until you see TTL. Point camera, press shutter, flash exposure is correct. It's that easy and the results are excellent.

The photo above has some strong sunshine coming through from behind left, but the Profoto B1 provided just the right amount of fill-flash from front left. And in other shots without strong sunshine, the exposure was equally correct. It just seemed too easy.

There are three remote controls - a general one that doesn't offer TTL exposure control and works with all cameras, and one each specifically for Canon or Nikon DSLRs which offer fully automatic control.

For more information, contact L&P Digital Photographics or click here.

Peter Eastway Uses

Peter Uses
AIPP

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